Apple AirPower Will Change How You Charge Your iPhone and Apple Watch

At the last minute, just when we thought there was nothing else for Apple to announce at its iPhone press event on Tuesday, the company gave a sneak peek of a new wireless charging pad it’s working on.

Called the Apple AirPower, the new charging pad is designed to wirelessly charge the battery on the company’s popular devices. Users plug in the AirPower pad and then place their devices on it to juice up their batteries.

According to Apple, the AirPower is compatible with Apple’s newly announced iPhone X, iPhone 8, and iPhone 8 Plus. Additionally, AirPower can charge the new Apple Watch Series 3 smartwatch, which was also unveiled on Tuesday, as well as Apple’s wireless AirPods earbuds.

Rumors had been going around for months that Apple was planning wireless charging for its new iPhones, a first for the company’s smartphone line. At its event on Tuesday, Apple said that the iPhone will use the Qi wireless charging standard, the most popular technology for wireless charging. A number of wireless charging accessories built by third-party device makers are already available using the standard that will work with Apple devices.

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It initially appeared that Apple (AAPL) wouldn’t offer its own wireless charging accessory, but at the end of its iPhone X discussion, the company unveiled the AirPower. Apple also showed how the AirPower could charge up to three devices simultaneously, and said that the iPhone can act as a gauge to display how much battery charge is left in each of its wireless devices.

But the critical AirPower details many users may care about are still unknown. Apple said only that the wireless charging accessory would be available next year some time and it didn’t say how much it would cost. In a statement, Apple called its unveiling a “sneak peek,” suggesting more details will be announced in the future.

For now, then, people who want wireless charging will need to stick to third-party accessories. Any device that uses the Qi wireless charging standard is compatible with Apple’s hardware.

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